Poll: Majority of Republicans support marijuana legalization

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(CNN) -

A majority of Republicans are now in favor of marijuana legalization, a new Gallup poll released Wednesday finds.

The poll found that 51% of Republicans support marijuana legalization, a figure up nine points from a Gallup poll conducted last year.

The increase in legalization support comes as Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a Republican who has frequently criticized the use of marijuana, hasn't yet announced whether he'll continue to abide by more lenient Obama-era guidance and avoid enforcing federal law in states that have legalized the drug.

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    A record-high percentage of Americans -- 64% -- support marijuana legalization. Support was only 12% in 1969 when Gallup first started polling adults on this issue. A majority of Americans have supported legalization since 2013.

    Among Democrats and Independents, legalization support is now 72% and 67%, respectively.

    A number of states and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana at the state level and more than two dozen, including the district, have legalized it for medical purposes.

    The Gallup poll is based on telephone interviews conducted October 5-11, 2017, with a random sample of 1,028 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia.